The Recession Hits College Campuses. Hard.
There is no doubt that in some way or another, every person out there has been affected by the economy. Between businesses getting shut down, people getting laid off, or the millions who are losing their homes, the list of disasters seems endless. But we, as college students, are not immune.
We all know that there have been some crazy budget cuts for colleges, but did you know what that means for you? Any idea what might be coming next for your school?
Just ask the cheerleading team at Florida International University. Oh wait, never mind. You can’t, because as of this week, they do not have one. That’s right. The nationally recognized cheerleading team, currently ranked fourth in the country, has been eliminated as part of an effort to cut 1 million dollars from FIU’s athletic budget for the coming school year.
Pete Garcia, the director of the university’s athletics departments, said, “The economy has forced us to make some very tough choices. Unfortunately, FIU athletics is neither immune to the current economic conditions or to the fact that the university, in general, has had to cut prominent programs across the board.” And the pom pons aren’t the only thing to which the FIU students have to say goodbye, because the marching band is also being cut. The school has also eliminated degree programs, increased tuition by 15%, and has been laying off staff as a result of their $35 million budget gap!
FIU is certainly not the only school out there that has been forced to make drastic changes. Schools in Arizona aren’t doin’ so hot either, as the three state universities face a 30-percent reduction in state aid (more than $300 million dollars!). ASU is considering laying off 2,500 employees, doubling tuition, and shutting down one, or maybe even two, of its campuses. “We could eliminate the nursing school, journalism school, the law school, and the engineering school and still not meet these cuts,” Michael Crow, president of ASU stated.
These situations are truly awful and the consequences of them are even worse. With program cuts, students will lose the privilege of what college is all about: having the opportunity to study whatever you want. And as far as the athletic department cuts – well, for many schools, the sports, the spirit, the screaming is what brings the students together and eliminating part of this department eliminates the community aspect of college life.
BUT, life isn’t about moping. We just have to know that these things have to happen, and hopefully they are for the best. Sometimes it takes sacrifices to make things better (or, you know, keep things afloat). So, it may not be easy or ideal, but it IS an important life lesson: learn to adapt.
See, they can’t cut everything.